Ethiopian Journalist Found Guilty of Defaming Orthodox Church Leaders Sentenced to One Year in Prison


Source: Africa News

A court in Ethiopia has sentenced a journalist to a year in prison on charges of defaming senior clergy members of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Prosecutors had pushed for a three-year jail term.

Getachew Worku, the editor-in-chief of the weekly Amharic independent newspaper, Ethio-Mihidar, was arrested over a week ago. He was in police custody until Tuesday’s ruling was delivered, the Addis Standard reported.

The case was initiated by the powerful Orthodox Church following the publication of an article alleging corruption on the part of senior members of the clergy.

The case was reportedly about the Saint Mary’s Patriarchal Monastery located in the capital, Addis Ababa.

Prosecutors argued for his sentence with the view that Getachew had breached Ethiopia’s criminal code article 613 under “defamation and spreading false information.” The Church meanwhile is yet to comment on the ruling.